News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Greater Akron Chamber

Hospice of the Western Reserve

Akron Children's Hospital


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us


Terry Pluto: Indians getting big bats from some unlikely players
Passed-over players including Raburn, Reynolds and Kazmir step up for the Tribe
by WKSU's AMANDA RABINOWITZ


Morning Edition Host
Amanda Rabinowitz
 
Mark Reynolds hits a double during a spring training game on February 24, 2013 in Goodyear, Arizona
Courtesy of Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Download (WKSU Only)

The Cleveland Indians have been a dynamic team to watch during the first month of the season. They’re hovering in third place in their division, but they’ve been doing something fans haven’t consistently seen in years:  Hit. And they’re hitting big -- racking up an American League-leading 44 home runs so far.

WKSU commentator Terry Pluto explains many of these home runs are coming from some unlikely players.

Listen: Terry Pluto commentary

Other options:
MP3 Download (4:01)


"Mega Mark"
Terry Pluto says the Indians call third baseman Mark Reynolds, “Mega Mark.” Reynolds alone has hit 10 home runs so far this season and that's the most for any player in the American League. 

But Reynolds, Pluto says, was an easy grab for the Indians because the Baltimore Orioles didn’t want him back even though he was willing to take less than his $11 million option for this year.

“The Indians really did not have a lot of competition to sign this guy and they signed him to a one-year contract,” Pluto said. “And he’s gone crazy.”

Reynolds has been performing well early on for the Indians, and his home runs are nothing to question.

“This guy doesn’t hit home runs, you know, it’s not tape measured,” Pluto said. “You have to bring in a surveying team to find out where the balls land.” Monday night, Reynolds hit at 460 ft. homer that nearly cleared the bleachers. 

Ryan Raburn -- Who?
The other player to surprise fans is Ryan Raburn. Last year Raburn played for Detroit and was sent to the minors, Pluto said.

“He’s had big springs the last four years with Detroit. He hits well in the spring time,” Pluto said. “He should be Mr. Arizona.”

Ever since the Indians put Raburn on their roster there has been some trepidation to whether he would last or not.

But because Raburn was on a minor league contract, he had “nowhere to go” except one or two other teams, Pluto said.

“Well I have never seen a major league player get 12 hits and 14 at bat. Never,” Pluto said.

A pitching veteran making a solid comeback
Another overlooked player is veteran pitcher, Scott Kazmir.

Kazmir came up in baseball at 22 years old. He played for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, pitched in two All-Star Games and led the league in strikeouts by 23 years old.

“By the time he was 27 he forgot how to pitch,” Pluto said.

However, Pluto said he has never seen someone like Kazmir before. A player who has come from “the dark side of the moon” -- where he’s receiving so much instruction he doesn’t even know if he’s pitching with the right hand anymore -- to actually becoming a polished pitcher.

A little bit of luck
Pluto said he’s still skeptical about Kazmir because they don’t know if he will get hurt again – Kazmir has been on the disabled list seven times with no surgery. But Pluto knows that there are a whole bunch of other teams checking out the Indians right now and looking at those formally overlooked players.

“You know what happened is that the Indians got a little lucky,” Pluto said.

Pluto knew that it was important for the Indians to get off to a great start, not just for the stats, but because the fans want to turn on the TV and watch it.


Pluto: How manager Terry Francona has helped offensive surge
Other options:
MP3 Download
(0:33)


Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook





Stories with Recent Comments

Will Ohio's marijuana initiative follow casinos' lead?
We just ask to have marijuana legalized and here comes some nimrod trying to rob us of our rights and make us buy it from some legalized new type DRUG DEALER th...

Fancy dinners from humble beginnings at The Blue Door
Grandma of Chris Miller moved to Florida in a retirement community but I sure miss the Falls and the Blue Door, and the fine service and the true friendship of ...

The Black Keys guitar tech's moment in the spotlight
Nice job, Vivian. It's always nice to hear about the unsung heroes getting their due! Thank you, Chuck Johnston (Full disclosure - I'm a friend of the Carney fa...

A guide for gift-shopping for older Ohians
I'll never be to old for peanut brittle.

Akron's Tuba Christmas: A resounding blast of holiday spirit
Nice piece, Vivian! Looking forward to hearing you move from flute to tuba on Saturday. Love hearing your interviews and this seemed extra special since I kno...

Cleveland Hugo Boss workers are fighting for their jobs again
Bro. Ginard; I support your effert to keep your jobs, I understand all about concesions, I was a Union offical from 1965 until 1991 and the company th...

Asian Carp control could benefit from bill passed by House, heading to the Senate
help me fight the battle against invasive carp by method of harvest

Ohio's Portman supports lifting limits on party political money
If Portman was legitimately concerned about outside groups influence on elections he would have supported the DISCLOSE act. Instead he helped block it being bro...

Study shows trade with China has cost more than 3 million U.S. jobs
I disagree with James Dorn! If we don't change the playing field and make it a fair competition the whole US industry will be weaker and weaker. Eventually all ...

Copyright © 2014 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University